I am left with absolutely no reason to think that the "four seasons" chess game had anything to do with the origin of European-style playing cards. However the book in which it is described may have set a lofty precedent for the cultural interpretation of games in classical and Christian terms, depending on how widely its influence spread (e.g. Cessolis).
... :-) ... the game appears at a suspicious time, short before the playing cards (1277 and 1283)
4-players games have more social fun than 3-players games and naturally also 2-players games, that's a simple fact, if you really play cards or games. Playing card decks (as dice) can realize games for higher numbers of players easily, board games always stay limited.
Dice are more limited than playing cards, playing cards offer much more possibilities for variation of the rules.
German playing cards suits ...
... have a clear "green" (and the suit is occasionally called "Grün"), the suit hearts has a clear "red", the suit bells might (related to coins = gold) be easily recognized as originally "yellow", the suit acorns appears here mixed ...
... but might have been originally brown.
It would have been a rather natural (and practical) idea to use 4 colors for the suits in the old original versions.
Spanish cards have green batons ...
... red wine for the cups, yellow for the coins, and blue or black for the swords.
Well, also early evidence, that the English "spades" did develop from the German "Spaten" and not from the Italian/Spanish words for sword.
Well, the 4-colors use is practical for the 4 suits and didn't need the Indish chess colors to exist.
Well, I've pointed earlier to the condition, that 1277 (English prince and king Edward) and 1283 (Alfonso's book) are close in time, reason to suspect, that both events belong possibly to one connecting action. Which would have been "prince Edward in the Levante having diplomatic contact to the Mongols in 1271". Short after this Edward for some time in Sicily, and ... what I didn't earlier state ... Sicily getting a Sicilian Vesper in 1282 (which solved the problem of a French dominance) and so getting an Aragon influence.
1282, 30th of March .... Sicilian Vesper
1282 ... Peter is at a military operation with 15.000 warriors in Tunis. He gets news about the Sicilian Vesper ...
1282, 30th of August .... Peter III of Aragon arrives at Sicily
1282, 4th September .... Peter III crowned as king of Sicily
The French king Philip III started then a crusade again Peter III, assisted by a pope with French orientation (1284-85)
Recently we talked about Peter III ...
viewtopic.php?f=11&t=1097&p=16967&hilit ... iii#p16967
... in the question of a "Tafureria", which we didn't understand. It seems, that this Tufereria or Tuferia later contained later a lot of documents, which were related to games. This was installed around 1283, just, when the game book of Alfonso was declared to be finished.
How does this installment of the Tuferia by Peter III (Aragon) refer to the "book publication" of Alfonso (Castilia) ? Who finished the book?
Alfonso had trouble a longer time with his son Sancho
seems to have declared Alfonso as crazy (in 1282 at the opportunity of a political meeting in Valladolid, as I understand it at 21 April; which would be 3 weeks after the Sicilian Vesper and the news of the event might have reached already Valladolid, about 1100 km at sea from Palermo, 750 km at land). The news was naturally of highest importance and should have been transported very quick.
Peter III seems to have reached a political agreement with Sancho
, already in a marriage contract, married in July 1282 an aunt, Maria de Molina, which was disputed by others a longer time. Alfons seems to have lost a lot of his power in relative short time. I don't know much about the details, but I think, that this "situation of the game book 1283" should be studied.